by Noah Hefley
March 16, 2019
“Many men owe the grandeur of their lives to adversity.” (Charles Spurgeon)
Make no mistake about it, there is no escape from difficulties in life. The Apostle Paul had thorns in his flesh and we feel thorns in our lives too. Here’s the reality: God allows adversity. It’s true from the best of us to the worst of us. No one is immune to the problems of life and none are exempt from tragedy in life. Problems are common to all and all too common.
One of my favorite cartoons when I was young was the Flintstones. You remember them? In one scene, Fred said to his sidekick, “Barney, do you have any trouble sleeping?” Barney replied, “No, I don’t have any trouble sleeping. My trouble starts as soon as I get up.”
That’s the way life is. We are seldom free of trouble for very long in our days. We all have, in fact, designer sets of troubles all along the way. But our Lord has promised to help us with these troubles. He doesn’t always help us out of our problems but He does help within our problems. It is because this is true that we are able to say, “My God will meet your needs according to his glorious riches in Christ Jesus” (Philippians 4:19). And we can say, “I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me” (Philippians 4:13). Further still, we should do as Simon says, “Cast all your cares upon Him because He cares for you (1 Peter 5:7).
When the possibility of adversity gives way to its inevitability, then we should respond to it with a teachability. The Apostle Paul learned with his thorn that, despite his weakness, God’s grace is sufficient and that His strength would be made evident. This knowledge became for him a source of great comfort even as God proved to be a resource of adequate power. What valuable lesson can you learn though your own thorns in life? What strength is yours straight from the throne of God? I can only imagine…
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